The title of this blog pretty much sums up the last month for me. I’ve traveled almost 1,700 miles since my last post and life on my end has been a bit of a whirlwind. I recently had the opportunity to attend the UW-River Falls College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences (CAFES) senior supper. It was there that I was encouraged by the optimism and enthusiasm of graduating seniors who are going to set off into their own big new world. Animal science professor Sylvia Kehoe offered a few key pieces of advice that I feel almost all of us can use.
First was: don’t burn bridges. The agriculture industry, although be it mighty, is small. You have the opportunity to make so many great connections and meet so many people that can help you. If not today, maybe weeks, months and even years down the road.
Next, keep your mind open to new opportunities and experiences. I was looking for something inspiring about taking opportunities, and while searching, I found this quote from Cameron Diaz (you know, the voice of Fiona from Shrek or Mary from There’s Something About Mary?), “Your regrets aren’t what you did, but what you didn’t do. So take every opportunity.” Take opportunities that come your way. As you may know, I recently took an opportunity that came my way and accepted the position of Ag in the Classroom Coordinator and Foundation Director. It’s the leap of going into the unknown that really makes life an adventure.
And then, agvocate. Why agvocate? Now more than ever is the time to speak up for agriculture. Everyone has a story so why not share it.
Finally, stay in touch. It is so easy this day in age to simply say that you will send an email or make a call tomorrow. I am guilty of it as well, but remember to stay in touch with colleagues and friends. You never know when you are going to need them.